The Lugo Era - Page 3


Happy Times on the Lugo Rancho

Don't think that life on the rancho was all trouble. There were happy times and many celebrations, called "fiestas".

A fiesta was usually celebrated around a holiday like Christmas or a saint's day.

There would be eating, drinking, dancing and music. Party games would be played. One of the favorites was crushing eggshells filled with perfumed water over people's heads. Fun!!!

There were rodeos, with displays of horsemanship and cattle roping. There were horse races and bull fights. Sometimes the ranch-hands would catch a bear in the mountains and have a bull fight the bear. This all sounds pretty cruel to us, but it was a popular sport in the 1800's.

Life on the Ranch

Years later Jose del Carmen Lugo told about rancho life. You'll remember that Jose was the Lugo son who lived in the old estancia. Here are some of his recollections, translated by Nellie Van de Grift Sanchez
  • "About eight in the evening all the family were occupied in their prayers."
  • "The separate accommodations...the boys in the outside porches...the girls in a locked room."
  • "At three in the morning all the family were made to arise and offer their devotions." (prayers)
  • Breakfast was choclate in milk and corn or flour tortillas,
  • There was no lunch!
  • Supper could be fish, meat, tortillas, beans, pumpkin, and "lechatoli" a kind of brown sugar pudding.

Wanna Buy My Valley?

The Lugos were happy when a group of Latter-day Saints (also called Mormons) came by. The Mormons offered to buy the Lugo ranch. The Lugos sold all of the Rancho San Bernardino for $77,000 in cash and promises. They were happy to go back to Los Angeles and enjoy their riches in a more civilized land.

Remember, the Lugos bought the valley just nine years before for $800 in cattle hides. That is a nice profit!

The Lugo period was over. It was 1851.

Go to the Map Room to see more about the Lugo Ranch Map!

How Big Were Their Footprints?